4 Suspects Held over Yemen Suicide Attack

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Militiamen who sided with the Yemeni army in battling al-Qaida "arrested" four jihadists allegedly involved in a suicide bombing that killed 45 people over the weekend, a local official said on Monday.

"The Popular Resistance Committees, in cooperation with the army, arrested four al-Qaida members suspected of involvement in Saturday's suicide attack," local official Mohsen bin Jamila told Agence France Presse.

One of the four suspects was "disguised as a woman" when he was arrested, he said without giving further details.

Forty-five people were killed in the suicide attack in Jaar, in Abyan province, one of a string of southern towns retaken by government troops in June after Islamists held it for more than a year.

Al-Qaida loyalists have carried out a spate of deadly attacks against Yemeni security forces and their militia allies since President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi came to power earlier this year pledging to crush the militants.

Al-Qaida took advantage of a nearly year-long uprising against Hadi's predecessor, veteran strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh, to seize large swathes of the country's south and east.

In July, Yemen announced placing its security services on high alert to prevent "terrorist" attacks after a plot was uncovered to launch assaults against security and military checkpoints.

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